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Koski epitomized a true Hurricane

If there was one regret that Blake Koski had during his career at Liberty, it’s that he didn’t play more soccer games for the Hurricanes.

After spending his freshman year playing academy soccer for FC Lehigh, Koski wishes he would have rather spent those hours, practices and games with the Liberty program instead.

It’s a statement that personifies Liberty’s star goalkeeper, who loved every second of being apart of the program.

“I just loved coming to practice after school and being with my friends,” said Koski. “I remember playing in an academy game, and our team wasn’t very good. I was making a lot of saves, but I missed playing high school with my friends and what that meant. After that [his freshman year], I knew I didn’t want to miss out on anymore of those opportunities.”

Koski certainly made the most of his chances with the program, as he started for three years with the program and became the area’s top goalkeeper his junior and senior seasons, notching first-team EPC honors both years and all-state honors in those campaigns as well. He was also the EPC MVP this past season.

That’s why Koski is Liberty’s Male Athlete of the Year for the Bethlehem Press and the Lehigh Valley Health Network.

“I hated playing goalkeeper growing up, but my brothers always made me play in goal since I was the youngest,” said Koski, who will continue his career at Lehigh. “I was a striker before that and loved scoring goals, but after being competitive with my brothers, I then started to enjoy playing goalie and not giving up goals.”

Koski will continue the Lehigh lineage of his family, as his father, Dean, has been the head coach of the program for 29 years. His brothers, Trevor and Spencer, both played on last year’s Patriot League title team and his other brother, Alec, was a coach/manager for the program.

Being able to step into the next phase of his life with his family, is almost suiting for the youngest Koski.

“My whole life I always knew I wanted to go to Lehigh,” he said, “but as I got older, I knew I had to open my eyes to other places. After a few visits to other colleges, I knew Lehigh was the best option. I’m really excited for the opportunity to play alongside my brothers and be with my dad.”

While everyday was a gift to Koski being apart of the Liberty program, he never got to experience the ultimate feeling of winning a championship during his career. The Hurricanes were knocked off by Parkland in the 2018 District 11 quarterfinals, but then came back last season and took the league by storm during the regular season, reaching the EPC final but ultimately losing to Emmaus 1-0.

The ‘Canes then saw their season end in the quarterfinal round of districts, suffering a stunning upset to Whitehall, 2-1 in overtime.

“When I look back, I don’t think I would change much,” he said. “Obviously, you want to win and you want to win titles, but that’s how soccer is and that’s what I love about it. That EPC final against Emmaus was my favorite game, just because it was such a big stage and it was a championship atmosphere. I’ll never forget that.”

And Koski will never forget his mornings, afternoons and evenings playing for Liberty and the sport he loves.